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What do you say when others bring up pregnancy/birthing/parenting issues?

Poll Results: What do you say when others bring up pregnancy/birthing/parenting issues?

 
  • 4% (9)
    I keep quiet. They probably wouldn't understand/respect my 'crunchy-granola ways'
  • 58% (111)
    I go into detail only if they seem receptive.
  • 30% (58)
    I tell them exactly what I think. Its important to expose people to better ways to raise healthy children
  • 6% (12)
    I've been known to get into heated debates over such issues. I like a good argument.
190 Total Votes  
post #1 of 44
Thread Starter 
If your somewhere like at work or a social gathering and someone brings up parenting issues do you speak your mind?

Often times at work or elsewhere these types of issues occasionaly come up in casual conversation among aquaintences/coworkers. Do you try and educate people who seem to have naive or uninformed views or mainstream opinions or do you just figure it isn't worth the time or energy?
post #2 of 44
In a social situation, I will state my opinion or facts that I have read. I don't see any reason to get all huffy or insist on my ideas as being truth, but there is definately a way to state your opinion and not be aggro.
post #3 of 44
Thread Starter 
I got to thinking about this, because all the ladies I work with are either young mothers or will probably be mothers eventually. One of them has an almost 2 year old. Some of her comments I disagree with somewhat. I'm not sure if I want to say anything or not. I hate to bash other people's choices.

For example one of our intern's sister just had a baby on the 26th and came in to show us pictures and visit. I overheard her say, "so is your sister breastfeeding?" I actually didn't her what the intern said, but I then heard her say, "well yea, lots of women breastfeed, I just couldn't do it. Who wants that kid hanging off them all the time?"

I just kept quiet. Besides being busy I didn't know if I wanted to counter that statement and give my opinion or if it was just a waste of time. If I go into a long rant on the virtues and benefits of Bf'ing they might just end up staring at me like I've got 2 heads Besides, what do either of them care atm? The intern isn't having a baby and the lady with the 2 year old isn't going to miraculously begin bfing her child.

She's said other things in the past and I just sort of decided to let these things go, because she says she doesn't plan on having more children anyways. I figure there's no point then, but then again the younger girls hear her opinions and might make decisions based on them. Do I offer my alternative 2 cents or just not worry about it? Is it more important to educate people in general, no matter whether they have babies/kids atm or not?
post #4 of 44
I think people in this area (MDC mindset) tend to be a little too "live and let live". I mean, that's great, but we have a lot of info, and it's my experience that people do want to know, esp young would-be mother types who don't have alternative view points to consider.

I can be very preachy, not judgemental: I mean, where I go on with stats and details and quotes, like I'm giving a lecture. I get encouragement from some people I talk to and just ride the train right on into the station.

Other times I try to hang back because it's so much effort to bring up such "weird" view points. When you're discussing it with someone who sort of gets the idea, that's one thing, but when they have never heard of your ideas, it's daunting. And sometimes they just expect you to be a crack pot - hippie with no real data. That gets irritating. Like they aren't interested in lisstening, just judging based on what they know. Then I usually just clam up because what's the point?

it sucks to have to have an arsenal of data to backup your views. it's ok for someone to be mired in the mainstream, but when you bring up something contrary, you've got to bring out the statistical charts and quote your resources. Can't you just say you do this because it feels right to you? No, aparently not because "feelings" aren't mainstream, either.

Sometimes I join a conversation by saying "this is how I feel about it..." and I usually get some air time. And perhaps some questions. When it's like -OMG you do THAT!! that they just get defensive and turn a deaf ear to these thoughts.

blessings
post #5 of 44
It varies. I never get preachy, argumentative or huffy. Sometimes I open up a dialogue by asking them questions... like if I tell a woman how beautiful her baby is, and get her to open up a bit, I may explain that I'm a doula and would love to know how her birth went. She may have questions, or ask me about my own experiences.... usually, when I share that I have two homebirthed babes, for example, they have questions or comments that allow me to squeeze what I know into our conversation. But I make it a point to tread lightly and really feel out the situation before I go on about anything.
post #6 of 44

i usually keep quiet

but, i dont share all of the values/practices of AP...only some.

i don't usually give advice unless asked (except on here:-)

if i disagree with someone, i usually let it go.

i dont want to make anyone feel bad.

i also feel that there are many "RIGHT" ways to do everything.
post #7 of 44

Sharing views

Some of my friends and family members have used the words Hippie Parenting to describe my style of parenting and it plucks my nerves because ap parenting and bf and being involved with LLL does not make you a hippie...though I have been to a few GD shows It just shows how narrow minded people can be when labeling. I always ask expecting friends if they are going to nurse, I encourage natural birth to everyone and I have hit some dead ends and heard some absurd responses. I wish people would educate themselves sometimes before they put down something. I know not everything that works for one works for another, but it peeves me when I hear comments like You're still nursing and he's how old? Or They ALL sleep in your bed? (Believe me that's one thing that sometimes we do regret,8 inches of bed is not enough@##! I do think we should share our views, but without being preachy or turning anyone off. I hope the behavior of my children ultimately will be a reflection of the parenting choices we made...except tonight because if they do not go to sleep they are in big trouble!
post #8 of 44
Quote:
Originally posted by MysticHealerMom
it sucks to have to have an arsenal of data to backup your views. it's ok for someone to be mired in the mainstream, but when you bring up something contrary, you've got to bring out the gant charts and quote your resources....

ITA with your whole post, MHM, and this one point so hit home for me. nobody quotes research when they say "if you hold that baby too much you'll spoil him", nor does anybody question the concept of infants sleeping in isolation, but if you mention that you're still nursing your 8 month old, or that you cosleep, you'd best be prepared to whip out that bibliography!

As for the poll, I give details if i think they'll be receptive, but i also don't hide what we do b/c i agree that we are all ambassadors of sorts when we depart from the mainstream b/c there are young/new parents out there who should at least be given the chance to consider *all* options. i just won't bother explaining the "why's" unless i think they are really interested in listening.
post #9 of 44
At my new job I generally work with 2 woman who are mainstream (and older than I), racist, etc. I occasionally have words with them but the situation is escalating. Other days I work wit h2 other woman whom ai like alot more! (I beleive it is mutual!0 One is younger (19yo) no kids anda Jehovahs Witness. Part of her faith is disgussing beleifs nad we have great convos, I beleive hse is anti circ and gonna look into vax now! (I don't beleive she beleives in pre marital sex, so circ. may not have come up prior to me...lol) I have also leanred more about JW's and am glad to have a better understanding of their beleifs, whci hare so often misconstrude. (BTW, she never preaches at work, these our convos brought up by me...lmao..she says she loves it. but yes, she does go door to door sometimes!!!!!!!!)

I try to shut up but am learnign I have opened eyes when mentioning the choices I've made!
post #10 of 44
i dont try to 'educate' people, because if someone talks to me with the 'let me tell you how it is' attitude, i shut down. i DO however, take advantage of opportunities to share my own experiences and choices, and just by that expose people to the idea that there are other ways of doing/seeing things. i figure all i can do is add my piece to their puzzle, but not try to reconstruct the whole thing. and i appreciate the peices they add to me, too.
post #11 of 44
I always speak my mind but if they are UNreceptive I never go into detail- so Im between those two - I think we owe it -that itsa responsibility if you have an awareness of it-to our community and the world to let ppl know at least that there exists this option and we are taking it- but not to judge others for not taking it- just my opinion-
post #12 of 44
I'm somewhere in the middle of going into detail if they're receptive and not bothering to go there if they seem clueless.:


After parenting for six years now, I think I do tend to be a tad bit judgemental about others parenting. Not good, I know...

Dh says I'm way too opinionated about our parenting....: whatever!!

mamapoppins
post #13 of 44
f i know the people, i'll tell them how i parent, but for strangers it's sort of one of those religion/politics/great pumpkin issues. if people already have their minds closed, no amount of sharing facts will educate them.

not even if i do it in a really sincere pumpkin patch.

frodo
post #14 of 44
Actions speak louder than words - especially if they are the actions of your happy AP baby or child.
Like, people have admired Littlest's behavior, etc. Then if those same people say something contrary to what I believe then I can just point to her (but subtly!) and say something like "yes, I see what you are saying. For us it worked much better to let her wean herself when she was ready and she seems to be pretty secure & well adjusted", or whatever. Now truthfully, who knows all the reasons for Littlest's great traits - but when she is sitting right there as an easy poster child for AP, why not?!

Right now there is a polite debate going on amongst my local group about TV/video watching and how many hrs if any is OK. And those same people have made it a point to tell me frequently how much they admire my older dd, a very creative & imaginative teen. So I'll stay quiet for now, but if asked about the subject won't hesitate to use her as gentle illustration/proof for our own beliefs on that topic.

(note the operative words here are "if asked"!)
post #15 of 44
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post #16 of 44
There's so much pressure for people like us to sit down, shut up, and be polite but why isn't the standard the same for the opposite??!!

Last year I was at a picnic and this couple (with a 6WO baby, mind, you) was blabbering on about how wonderful Babywise is. Another older couple mentioned how their granddaughter needed to be given this because she's 2 months old and not sleeping through yet.

I'm ready to explode (poor dh knew this all along) I *Finally* told the entire crowd (up 'till the grandparents' remark I was going to quietly talk to the couple) how dangerous Babywise is, how I have reams of documentation on the dangers of implementing Ezzo's teachings.

Why was *I* made to feel sheepish about sharing my opinion (and loads of facts) about this swill while Ezzoites feel no shame touting the "wonders" of this misguided program??!!

At that point I decided to not only share my opinions but warn expectant parents when I have the chance.

I noticed a natural tendency for parents to be wary of the hyper restraint parenting (read Ezzo and Pearl) if they are warned about it before some other person gives them the material to read. If you share with the couple after they have read this crap but before their baby starts getting into trouble (milk loss, weight loss, signs of attachment disorders) they are resistant to your imput.

I will share my opinion. If no one's interested I'll shut up but if people show interest (by asking questions, etc.) I will share my opinion.

To keep quiet gives the other people one voice (that of the restraint types)

Debra Baker
post #17 of 44
I just speak my mind. I tell them what I think and how I feel.
post #18 of 44
I have found that people can't really argue with "I did this and it worked for me." Sometimes they are uncomfortable with my conflicting view and pretty much don't respond, and we change the subject. Sometimes they are responsive and I talk about it, convince, site recommendations and statistics, etc, etc. Especially about a few hot-button issues I feel passionate about (breastfeeding toddlers and circumcising are my big two). But if birth-stories are to be shared, I will share what I think about drugs, episiotomies, and labor. And of course, I know to shut up when eyes start rolling or heads start their 'polite nod'.

Nicole
mama to Becca (2/1/00) and Tony (12/2/01)
post #19 of 44
It depends on the audience. Dd2's godparents got married in July, and I had a prewedding chat with her godmom about bf and circumcision. I was pretty sure that he would be anti circ as he is Irish, and therefore intact (I assume!!!). She was all pro bf too, and couldn't understand her friend who had a babe in April and quit bf in like a week. She's due herself this April and I sent them the link to the 140 reasons to bf, but I think it might be okay.

I also butted in at a former fs's ped's office. The receptionist was telling another couple how they had to make their baby eat meat as he needed the protein, etc. The dad was closest, so I made a point of telling him that my dd never ate meat, was 8 yo, and healthy as a horse, and that what the receptionist was saying was bull.
post #20 of 44
Quote:
Originally posted by Piglet68



nobody quotes research when they say "if you hold that baby too much you'll spoil him", nor does anybody question the concept of infants sleeping in isolation, but if you mention that you're still nursing your 8 month old, or that you cosleep, you'd best be prepared to whip out that bibliography!

yes yes yes! god, i am so tired of hearing about people who think they are 'experts' just b/c their views are mainstream! for example, you would think that ferber hung the moon based on his 'following' (sounds like a cult leader ) of enthusiastic supporters. and yet, why haven't these people ever heard of james mckenna or william dement, who are actually considered to be experts by the scientific community on sleep issues? is it b/c what they have to say ISN'T what people want to hear, no quick-fix solution?

Quote:
ˆDebra Baker



There's so much pressure for people like us to sit down, shut up, and be polite but why isn't the standard the same for the opposite??!!
i've sat down, shut up, and been polite for too long... i can't remember where i read or heard this, but maya angelou once said something along the lines of... every time you don't speak up when someone says something that bothers you (whether it be a racist comment, criticism, etc), it's like letting a bird peck out a little piece of your soul, and every time you let something slide, they take away another little piece, and another, and so on, in and of themselves they aren't big pieces, but over time how much of your soul are you willing to lose?....
i'm making it a resolution to speak up for my babe and our parenting style and make myself as annoying as the mainstreamers!
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